CD release party for Anderson at Divided Sky |

CD release party for Anderson at Divided Sky

Rick Chandler

Dan Thrift / Lake Tahoe Action / Dan Anderson's CD release party is Saturday, June 23 at the Divided Sky in Meyers.

Dan Anderson moved to Lake Tahoe in 2004 with nothing but a guitar and a few songs rolling around in his head. Just a young kid with a dream.

Why was the Kansas City, Mo., native called out West? Was it the mountains? The fresh, clean air?

“Well, my girlfriend had a job transfer out here,” said Anderson, a bit sheepishly. “She works at Harrah’s.”

OK, as good a reason as any.

“I had always wanted to come out here myself as well,” he said. “I definitely thought that I’d have more opportunities here. Tahoe is relatively close to a lot of universities, the coast, a lot places to play,” he said. “It’s a good place to spread out from. Plus, there’s a great music scene right here in town. Tahoe has been very good to me so far.”

Stop in and see for yourself, as Anderson plays gigs at a number of local hangouts — from The Tudor English Pub to the Fresh Ketch to the Blue Angel Cafe. He’ll be at the latter on July 7.

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But the next big performance will be on Saturday, June 23, as the Divided Sky in Meyers plays host to Anderson’s CD release party.

“I’m really looking forward to that,” he said. “The people at Divided Sky have been very supportive; owners Brian and Mike encourage musicians with new material. They really support the local music scene.”

The CD is “Beneath the Waves,” 12 original songs by Anderson, available through, or

Anderson’s music is an exploration of the acoustic guitar in a John Maher/Dave Matthews/John Mellancamp kind of vein. His style is smooth and introspective, his musicianship superb — you’ll have trouble believing that someone in their mid-20s is this technically accomplished.

But after all, he’s been at this professionally since he was 15 years old.

“I’ve been playing the guitar since I was a kid, and I joined a band after my freshman year of high school,” he said. “We called ourselves Turnstile. There were a few other names we threw around before that, which I won’t get into because it’s too embarrassing.”

Anderson’s first professional gig was at a party outside of Kansas City, “Out in the middle of nowhere,” he said. “We were into rock, the Nirvana kind of thing. We were definitely grunge influenced.”

But before long Anderson had graduated to a more mellow sound, becoming not only proficient with the guitar, but a real writer as well.

Through his music he rounds up the usual suspects and examines them in a unique way. His passions are evident — love for his girlfriend, the outdoors (he’s an avid biker and hiker) and a curiosity about life itself. Take these lines from “Nothing Without You:”

I’m headed far from home, what lies ahead I just don’t know

She’s the light that guides the way, and it grows stronger every day

“I come from a lot of influences; I’ve even been accused of being a little bit country,” said Anderson, whose day job is as a supervisor in the Harrah’s count room. “There’s even some punk rock in there, probably. Where I grew up in Kansas City, there was a lot of blues and jazz, and rock was pretty big. So I was exposed to a lot of styles.”

And now that he’s come to Tahoe, those styles have melded into something unique.

“I’m just playing as much as I can, letting people hear me and trying to make it,” Anderson said. “The journey has been a lot of fun so far.”

We’ve gone far just by ourselves, I need you and no one else

I’m chasing down elusive dreams, what lies ahead’s a mystery.